Proteogenomic analysis of Georgfuchsia toluolica revealed unexpected concurrent aerobic and anaerobic toluene degradation

Siavash Atashgahi*, Margreet Oosterkamp, Peng Peng, Jeroen Frank, Beate Kraft, Bastian Hornung, David Schleheck, Sebastian Lücker, Mike Jetten, Alfons Stams, Hauke Smidt

*Corresponding author for this work

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Abstract

Denitrifying Betaproteobacteria play a key role in the anaerobic degradation of monoaromatic hydrocarbons. We performed a multi-omics study to better understand the metabolism of the representative organism Georgfuchsia toluolica strain G5G6 known as a strict anaerobe coupling toluene oxidation with dissimilatory nitrate and Fe(III) reduction. Despite the genomic potential for degradation of different carbon sources, we did not find sugar or organic acid transporters, in line with the inability of strain G5G6 to use these substrates. Using a proteomics analysis, we detected proteins of fumarate-dependent toluene activation, membrane-bound nitrate reductase, and key components of the metal-reducing (Mtr) pathway under both nitrate- and Fe(III)-reducing conditions. High abundance of the multiheme cytochrome MtrC implied that a porin–cytochrome complex was used for respiratory Fe(III) reduction. Remarkably, strain G5G6 contains a full set of genes for aerobic toluene degradation, and we detected enzymes of aerobic toluene degradation under both nitrate- and Fe(III)-reducing conditions. We further detected an ATP-dependent benzoyl-CoA reductase, reactive oxygen species detoxification proteins, and cytochrome c oxidase indicating a facultative anaerobic lifestyle of strain G5G6. Correspondingly, we found diffusion through the septa a substantial source of oxygen in the cultures enabling concurrent aerobic and anaerobic toluene degradation by strain G5G6.
Original languageEnglish
JournalEnvironmental Microbiology Reports
Volume13
Issue number6
Pages (from-to)841-851
ISSN1758-2229
DOIs
Publication statusPublished - Dec 2021

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